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Book 5 - The Order of the Phoenix

Severus Snape's Analysis 
through each Snape moment or reference in the book!!

 

 Chapters - 28 & 29  

   Chapter 4 to 23    Chapter 24 to 27   Chapter 30 to 38  

Legend: 

  These images: Read at the same line-level in the other column (1024x768)
Long black spaces: intentional spacing to give me more space for analysis!
gold - physical description
red - personality, personal taste
white - character analysis
mauve/purple - facts
grey cells/light yellow - my personal favorites! 

 


 on all five books!!!

 Warning: In absolutely no case must this text be used for other things than evaluation, fan or inspiration purposes.  I do this only to allow other fans to appreciate the delightful work of JK Rowling and make a full character analysis of one of her creations.  
No money is being made, keep it that way! 
Hogwarts High Inquisitor Educational Decrees:

"Dolores Jane Umbridge (High Inquisitor) has replaced Albus Dumbledore as Head of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry." (OoP28)

Chapter 28 - Snape's worst memory

Harry spent the whole of the next day dreading what Snape was going to say if he found out how much further into the Department of Mysteries Harry had penetrated during his last dream. With a surge of guilt he realised that he had not practised Occlumency once since their last lesson: there had been too much going on since Dumbledore had left; he was sure he would not have been able to empty his mind even if he had tried. He doubted, however, whether Snape would accept that excuse.

He attempted a little last-minute practice during classes that day, but it was no good. Hermione kept asking him what was wrong whenever he fell silent trying to rid himself of all thought and emotion and, after all, the best moment to empty his brain was not while teachers were firing revision questions at the class.

Resigned to the worst, he set off for Snape's office after dinner. Halfway across the Entrance Hall, however, Cho came hurrying up to him.

 Finally! He admits it! And just to answer your question, Harry: "No! Snape surely won't take that as an excuse! Especially since the faith of so many people rest on your learning Occlumency!  What could be more important than that?! "  Oh my! I just realised how Harry will be angry at himself when he realises that Sirius' death is in much part due to his lack of effort!  Eek!

 

 

 

I hope those who thought Snape complained about Harry' sloppiness are happy now!  True, Snape has prejudices, but I say he's just observant when he says Potter is sloppy and doesn't put in much effort. I say Snape is a pessimist or in other words, he's an optimist with experience !

 

 

For the worst indeed! We all know what's going to happen in there after all, but whom will it be worst for? Potter or Snape?

Fuming, Harry descended the stairs to Snape's dungeon and, though he knew from experience how much easier it would be for Snape to penetrate his mind if he arrived angry and resentful, he succeeded in nothing but thinking of a few more things he should have said to Cho about Marietta before reaching the dungeon door.

'You're late, Potter,' said Snape coldly, as Harry closed the door behind him.

Snape was standing with his back to Harry, removing, as usual, certain of his thoughts and placing them carefully in Dumbledores Pensieve. He dropped the last silvery strand into the stone basin and turned to face Harry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

'So,' he said. 'Have you been practising?'

'Yes,' Harry lied, looking carefully at one of the legs of Snape's desk.

'Well, we'll soon find out, won't we?' said Snape smoothly. 'Wand out, Potter.'

Harry moved into his usual position, facing Snape with the desk between them. His heart was pumping fast with anger at Cho and anxiety about how much Snape was about to extract from his mind.

'On the count of three then,' said Snape lazily. 'One - two -'

Snape's office door banged open and Draco Malfoy sped in.

'Professor Snape, sir - oh - sorry -'

Malfoy was looking at Snape and Harry in some surprise.

'It's all right, Draco,' said Snape, lowering his wand. 'Potter is here for a little remedial Potions.'

Harry had not seen Malfoy look so gleeful since Umbridge had turned up to inspect Hagrid.

'I didn't know,' he said, leering at Harry, who knew his face was burning. He would have given a great deal to be able to shout the truth at Malfoy - or, even better, to hit him with a good curse.

'Well, Draco, what is it?' asked Snape.

'It's Professor Umbridge, sir - she needs your help,' said Malfoy. They've found Montague, sir, he's turned up jammed inside a toilet on the fourth floor.'

'How did he get in there?' demanded Snape.

'I don't know, sir, he's a bit confused.'

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

'Very well, very well. Potter,' said Snape, 'we shall resume this lesson tomorrow evening.'

He turned and swept from his office. Malfoy mouthed, 'Remedial Potions?' at Harry behind Snape's back before following him.

 Ah!! Not a wise decision!  However, I'm glad Harry realises it's so much easier to enter his mind when he's angry. Awareness is the first step. A shame he doesn't take it up a notch!

 

 

I love this little shot because Snape's not even turning around to greet the boy. I love doing that myself, as often as I can actually. Yet, it's not so common for people to do so because most think it's best to always turn around to greet someone. True it's polite, but personally, I can't resist the urge to not turn around from what I'm doing and still greet a person. I'm never ignoring them, I always acknowledge them because I can do it even though I'm doing something else. What I hate however is when people just ignore you.  It's like they can't do two things at the same time.  When Snape ignores someone though, I do believe it's always on purpose though.

Okay, 'greet' is not what we could call 'you're late, Potter', but he's acknowledging him at least.  I've observe that logical people do tend to do this when someone comes in and they're busy doing something which requires concentration.  They'll want to focus still on what they're doing, but they will be able to handle something else all the same. For me it's like a tiny challenge, deduction is important to me and I always do it. Sometimes it annoys people because I say 'yes' before they're even finished. I rarely miss though, I'm usually right in my deductions of what they wanted to tell me. In this case, it could have been any student after all, but Snape knew it was Potter. It's a simple deduction from the fact that Potter didn't knock, he seemed to enter without a bang, and the time, but still a fun deduction when you're a logical person and don't like wasting time in small talk. I certainly do, my mother noticed this week how I don't look people in the eye when doing transactions. It's exactly because of that: let's avoid small talk and get down to business. Sometimes I feel like talking, when I don't however, don't try to coax me into small talk. You'll get quite a glare! That's my Snappish side! Therefore, I see Snape's reaction here as a silent warning. And there we have it, the next thing he asks is related to their 'business'.

Snape's desk has legs.

Oh please!! Give him some credit!  Anyone who's been studying the art of human gestures will know looking down, blinking a lot or scratching one's nose when asked a question usually mean one is lying. Do you think the Head of Slytherin is unaware of that?! No wonder he says: "well, we'll soon find out, won't we". He said so in a smooth voice, too, it's obvious he knows he's just been lied to. But as a good Slytherin, he's not about to reveal his suspicions! He he!

 

I think Snape voices his thoughts lazily because of what I just explained: he knows it will once again be useless and that he's losing his time on a boy who won't do his homework. As a teacher, believe me, this can become an enormous source of stress: you all want your students to succeed, however, you can't do it for them! You can encourage them, push them, advice them and in Snape's case insult them so they may try a bit just to prove him wrong (I'm sure part of his complaints and vicious comments are intended to make sure students prove him wrong when he says something like: "You're lacking so much skills, it's a wonder you never killed yourself in an attempt to brew a potion" or something as depreciative as that. It will work on most teenagers, however, some will lose confidence, as with Longbottom. But back on the subject at hand: Snape cannot do it for the boy. He can show him, he can practise with him, but he has no power over Harry's achieving it or not nor his practising out of his lessons. And THAT is very frustrating which is why I say Snape is becoming tired of this. Not only does he strongly suspect the boy to have lied to him but he also knows he's not tried enough up to now. Wouldn't you be weary?  I am renown to be a very patient teacher, demanding but patient, but even I would not put up with Harry's lack of efforts.  If this was to be graded, he'd have a grade for his efforts which wouldn't be much! I think it's important to remember that when reading this chapter!  Snape tries, but he's getting tired of losing his time and energy on Harry. It's not like he doesn't understand, it's the fact that he doesn't try to understand. Even Dumbledore took some moments before fleeing to impress the importance of his learning Occlumency but the boy still found a way to skive off his role in the war!! Who wouldn't be growing impatient?!

Quick thinking, as always ^_^

Looks like she's no good enough at charms and Snape is good enough to get Montague out of the toilet! I appreciate Snape's coolness in this matter, it shows how he can be 'nice' and not jump to conclusions. He's an investigator first of all, logical and cold, so he won't react like the other teachers would. Imagine McGonagall finding out one of her Gryffindors was stuck in a toilet, she'd jump out of her seat and run to the rescue or at least she'd sound worried! Not Snape. Then again, I wonder how much of his coolness is due to his believing Montague deserved what came his way?! Is it why he's not in such a hurry to know if he's come across any much harm?! I wish I knew.  Also, it confirms that Snape is not so interested in Quidditch (in my opinion) because Snape didn't sound too happy at the prospect of finding his team's captain and chaser. Interesting!

From the HP Lexicon:

Montague (c. 1978 - present) Slytherin, c. 1989 - 1996, Q. Chaser/captain
Member of Umbridge's Inquisitorial Squad who made the mistake of trying to take House Points from the Weasley twins without witnesses, and consequently was stuffed by them into the fourth floor Vanishing Cabinet; reappeared some days later jammed into a toilet on that floor, after which he was confused and disoriented for a long time (OP19, OP28, OP30).

I can't help but sense a bit of weariness in there. Because Umbridge can't do it herself, because they had to interrupt the lesson or because it's such a stupid problem, we don't know. But I'd wager Snape is annoyed by a bit of everything!

 

For those who believe Snape was horrible for acting so badly with Harry after he looked into his Pensieve and cancelling his lessons, please consider this: Snape turned and swept out of his office after announcing the 'lesson' would resume on the next evening. Did he shove Potter out?  No! What does it mean then? I think it simply means that to some extend, Snape trusts him enough to find the way out by himself AND not go through his personal belongings or steal from him.And that even though he has known (though never could prove) that Harry had stolen from him before.  That ladies and gentlemen is a strong statement!   I don't think Snape has proven annoyed beyond common sense just now so that he simply forgot to drive the boy out before leaving. No. If you don't trust someone you will make sure that this person does not have a single chance to steal from you or betray your intimacy.  TRUST!  When you don't have trust, what do you have left?  Also remember that up to now, Snape has trusted Potter to practise Occlumency and try hard in and out of their lessons. However, we know that trust in Potter went to the dogs! Now, Potter is trusted once more by Snape with his most important thoughts, those in the Pensieve, along with his personal belongings: Potions ingredients, Snape's books and parchments, etc. He's trusted with all of those things at the same time.

For those of you who are interested, I found a very good scientific article about the' view of trusting and being trustworthy". http://www.neurosemantics.com/Articles/Trust.htm

I want to talk this subject through before it occurs later in this chapter because it is essential to me that we understand Snape's reaction of Harry's actions the second he turned around and looked into his Pensieve.  I'm basing myself upon my views and also this web site by L. Michael Hall, Ph.D.

In a word, I believe the mess that will ensue is nothing more than a vicious circle of mistrust/lack of trust that resulted in a total human-made and ego-driven situation:

  1. Dumbledore didn't trust Harry with vital information (and I believe he forbid Snape from telling the boy much, too)
  2. Snape has always shown he is trustworthy through actions, not words. However, for Harry, words sound more meaningful than actions.
  3. Snape abused his trust from his relation to the boy as his teacher because he's always berating him more than others due to a grudge. Thus Harry does not trust Snape as a whole, not simply from his student's point of view.
  4. Snape's grudge is from a lack of trust in life in general, but especially the Marauders' bullying. Therefore, he won't allow Potter to repeat the process.
  5. Dumbledore trusted both Harry and Snape to make the most out of the Occlumency lessons.
  6. Snape trusted Harry to practise and put efforts into his lessons.  He also trusted him with some information about the Dark Lord who was after the control of his mind and their respective role in this war. Harry therefore knew enough reasons to try hard enough to block his thoughts. Yet, he thought people were not trusting him enough.
  7. The rest of the Order were also very privy of the information concerning Harry. In fact, Snape was the one who told him the most about his role (closing his mind to make sure the Dark Lord wouldn't get what he wanted). But the others didn't give Harry what he wanted to know and never explained him why he couldn't know. That was also a breach of his trust towards adults.
  8. Dumbledore was too cryptic and didn't make sure Harry would do it no matter what.  Lupin and Sirius as well: they put that responsibility of resuming lessons on Harry though they were the adults and therefore, it was their job to contact Snape. We don't know if they did, but it sounds as though they didn't and that no one in the end looked for someone else to teach him Occlumency. That's again another fact that adds to the
  9. Harry is ashamed of his not blocking his dreams and/or he doesn't want to reveal too much because he wants to play the hero and/or because he doesn't trust the adults anymore.
  10. Harry also breached the trustworthiness placed in him by the adults and friends (mostly Hermione who kept questioning him) because he lied and left out details often. For example, when he tells Sirius and Lupin that Snape won't give him lessons anymore, he doesn't mention everything to them nor that he doesn't intend to ask Snape at all.  He didn't tell them that if Snape was so furious was not only because of the Pensieve incident. It was also because he had not practised nor blocked his dreams at all. On the contrary, he encouraged them. But he never told them this and therefore, Lupin and Sirius could only be angry at Snape because he looked the only one to blame while in fact, he was not.  

If you've followed the breach of trust that occurred as a result of all those people, humans, interacting together, you'll understand why everything was messed out.  They either abused the confidence others put in them or skived their responsibilities by handing it out to others.  To support my claims, let me quote that web site I mentioned earlier: "Trust is essential for every relationship. There is no relationship that's not based on trust. Working with and through others in business is based on trust. Leadership is based on trust. Intimacy is based on trust. "  So you see, once trust is doubted, there cannot be a relationship which in this case means that there cannot be an efficient Order.  And since Wand Oath and Secret Keeping exists in the wizarding world to ensure no one breaches the secrets of others, it is unforgivable that nothing towards that effect was done so that everyone involved could be privy to what was going on while also ensuring secrecy.  After all, as mentioned here "Conversely, distrust, the lack of trust, behaviors that erode trust, and betrayal undermine relationship, effectiveness, and resourcefulness. Dennis and Michelle Reina (1999) put it succinctly in their book Trust and Betrayal in the Workplace, "Betrayal is systemic: it affects the whole system."  

So the whole system was meant to fall apart and, in this case, it resulted in Sirius Black's death and the events that took place at the Ministry of Magic which surely affected more than one person.  That's why my question towards Snape putting an end to the lessons always arose that question in me: why did no one react if this was so important?! Why did no one thought of begging for Harry? Why did no one do something to ensure that issue was taken care of?  Where were the solutions: Harry had made sure the first solution (his lessons with Snape) was screwed up. Now what?!  Didn't Sirius and Lupin consider something else? Surely someone knew where Dumbledore was hiding or if not, that they therefore had two choices: beg Snape and get HIS side of the story OR find another Occlumens.  Why was that vital?  Because we need to repair the damage when we've made a mistake. "When our behavior accidentally produce a result that we don't want and did not intent, we have to deal with that".As with Harry who has to deal with his mistake and apologize for breaching Snape's trust in him. "And we need to deal with it immediately by assuming responsibility to straighten things out. This means apologizing, making amends and bringing out actions under control so that they match our words. Trust is always earned and we earn it by our actions, by acting with consistency. This means conscientiously honoring our agreements."

Therefore, as I was saying before, Harry and all the others were as guilty in this case as Snape. They all got tangled up in their humanly weaknesses, which caused such large gaps in the trustful links they had established within the Order and the resistance.  In this case, Harry's made a horrible mistake. He didn't think about the consequences enough and he didn't intend bad results like what happened. His biggest mistake was however not ASSUMING RESPONSIBILITY IMMEDIATELY.  He made no amends and was in fact happier that way because Snape ignored him.  Therefore, he didn't bring out actions to match his words because none were ever issued. Now doesn't it look as though Snape also skived off his responsibility?!  I don't think so: when Harry broke into his Pensieve, he breached their mutual agreement. Even before that moment, he had already breached his promise to everyone to try to learn Occlumency as best he could, but of course Potter never mentioned that incriminating fact to anyone. Only we know and yet, the reader will still tend to put the fault onto Snape.  Trust had not been earned, yet, Snape had kept giving him lessons.  His actions spoke of consistency and consciously honouring his promises.  He endured it because he was keeping his word.  What about Harry?  Did he try? Did he bloke his dreams?  Did he mind his own business and was he secretive enough so that if the Dark Lord broke into his mind, he wouldn't give away all the Order's precious information?  NOPE!  In Harry's case, his words were empty promises, his actions were weak and feeble compared to his words.  This was NOT the agreement.  So who failed who here?! Pretty much everybody, but especially Harry.

As for Sirius and Lupin, I was very surprised we heard nothing to the effect that they had not made contact with Snape in the book. Especially Sirius who is Harry's godfather, hence his only responsible living parent. Yet did Sirius put aside his grudge against Snape for that?  To make sure his godson did the right thing?  NOPE!  He skived off his responsibility as a godfather out of spite and would not even give Snape the benefit of doubt for a second. He immediately swore against the man as if he had done this just out of his own grudge.  But Snape didn't.  And when Dumbledore in a later chapter says he thought Snape could at least put his grudges aside, I cringed because he himself initiated this circle of mistrust and did not mention Harry's lack of efforts along with the other Order members' lack of efforts to correct the situation.  It's like he imputed the whole responsibility of the lessons on Snape's shoulders.  Harry is 16, that has got to count as being an adequate age to be responsible of his own action!  And if not, then Sirius should have been accounted for instead. As for Harry silently cursing Snape for Sirius' death in the end, to me, it is nothing more than a way for Harry to forget his own responsibility in the matter. He doesn't want to think : "Oh, because I didn't put enough efforts in my lessons and didn't practise, not to mention I explored the most secret thoughts of a teacher who trusted me enough to leave me alone in his office while he ran to the rescue of one of his students, my godfather died!  What did I do?!  I was so stupid and conceited!!" Yes, but that happy day of consciousness may never occur to Harry, and therefore, in the minds of soooo many fans, Snape will remain the big bad wolf who contributed to kill Sirius, the teenager who wouldn't grow up.  

Therefore, my conclusion on the subject is the same as above: this mess was created by intertwined human feelings which pretty much all bordered on trust and breach of trust. I understand that we all have our own limits. In Severus' case, his limits as to whom he can trust or not were thinner than most people because of his background:  influenced by his being a Slytherin, having grown with potentially violent/disturbing parents or people who betrayed his trust time and time again, and having to go through all sorts of humiliation through the hands of the highly praised Marauders who even got away with near murder. And then again, who wouldn't react badly to one person you hate reading your Journal when you trusted them with it?!  Think of how you would react to this if you were helping that same person, say, to study for its most important exam, you spent time teaching but realised that after months, the person was still not even trying and did not even study. On the contrary, the person would even tell you that he/she'd had gone shopping on a day he/she was supposed to study.  But still, you had given your word and you wanted to help that person even though she/he is not putting efforts. You do it for the cause, you give time and your personal space for that.  And then, one evening, the person comes in late and then another comes to get you to help another guy.  Okay, no problem, you will help the person and resume the lesson the next evening even though you had planned a nice evening alone in your quarters.  After saving said person, imagine coming back to your office to witness that same lazy and sloppy person still there, but not only that, he/she's reading your personal journal. Your most secret thoughts are in there, things you never want people to know but there it hits you in the face! The little twit whom you had trusted to find his way out of  your office is there shredding the last hope you had in him.  Do you want to see that person again soon?  No! Do you want to keep giving your time and efforts for him/her? No!  Do you trust him/her now? No! And you tell yourself: why did I ever do it?! That person cares nothing for me and he/she betrays me in such a horrible way. Therefore, no you don't want to see that person again soon, not on your personal time, surely not unless you're a very very virtuous person with no self-esteem!  You also feel like slapping that person when you discover what he/she's done, but you don't though you are very close.  And now my question to you: will you give more of your time to this person so she/he can pass his very important exam for which he/she had yet to make a bit of effort for?!  No, because it seems from his/her actions that this person doesn't care enough and doesn't think it's that important. Well, let him/her fail then, what's the difference giving lessons or not since the person never tried enough in the first place?  All it brought you is pain and humiliation. Will you go on holding up to your promise?  What about his part of the bargain?  And that is why, ladies, I  think Snape was rather lenient and very controlled in this whole affair. Especially when he caught Harry doing it and after when he had to deal with him in class.  Yes, and I shall explain later on when this subject arises, you'll understand what I mean.

Oh! And I was forgetting about Harry's breach of Snape's trust only reinforcing the negative mistrust Severus cultivated over the years.  It may even have been the last straw! Fortunately, it was not or else, Snape would never have taken the hint Potter gave him when later they'll all end up in Umbridge's office.  No, even then, Snape listened to the boy, which proves that this breach of his confidence towards the boy was not total nor did it trigger his turning back to the dark side. But it could have! He could have thought the Potter boy was again trying to lure him into another humiliating experience, but he didn't let that stop him, he did prevent the Order and went out to check on Sirius.  The moral of this story: we never know when someone will reach their triggering point when trust is involved. We never know when our inner-Death Eater will awake.

As a conclusion, let me again quote this from L. Michael Hall, Ph.D

We actually undermine the trust others can put in us when we do not share information. It puts them into a position of guessing, assuming, and mind-reading. It is hardly ever in our best interest to be secretive.  What do you feel when vital information is not shared with you? We typically feel as though we have not been trusted or valued.
  • Trust begins early, from the moment we arrive in the world. We are made for trust. Yet trust can be violated, damaged, and undermined by a wide-range of actions that we consider a violation of trust. This gives no license to not trusting, it only increases the challenge of learning to distinguish trustworthy from untrustworthy. Reliability gives off signs and we only have to look to see the congruence between what a person says and does.
  • Where there's the violation of trust, the burden falls on the person who has not been reliable to prove him or herself and to demonstrate in actions and not just with words and promises that he or she can and will come through, be true, and align actions with words.

NOTE: I'll use green and orange along with normal colours in this scene. Green is to underline the important passages I'm analysing about Harry and the Marauders and their actions. Orange is for Lily.

Seething, Harry replaced his wand inside his robes and made to leave the room. At least he had twenty-four more hours in which to practise; he knew he ought to feel grateful for the narrow escape, though it was hard that it came at the expense of Malfoy telling the whole school that he needed remedial Potions.

He was at the office door when he saw it: a patch of shivering light dancing on the doorframe. He stopped, and stood looking at it, reminded of something… then he remembered: it was a little like the lights he had seen in his dream last night, the lights in the second room he had walked through on his journey through the Department of Mysteries.

He turned around. The light was coming from the Pensieve sitting on Snape's desk. The silver-white contents were ebbing and swirling within. Snape's thoughts… things he did not want Harry to see if he broke through Snape's defences accidentally…

Harry gazed at the Pensieve, curiosity welling inside him… what was it that Snape was so keen to hide from Harry?

The silvery lights shivered on the wall… Harry took two steps towards the desk, thinking hard. Could it possibly be information about the Department of Mysteries that Snape was determined to keep from him?

 

 

Harry looked over his shoulder, his heart now pumping harder and faster than ever. How long would it take Snape to release Montague from the toilet? Would he come straight back to his office afterwards, or accompany Montague to the hospital wing? Surely the latter… Montague was Captain of the Slytherin Quidditch team, Snape would want to make sure he was all right.

Harry walked the remaining few feet to the Pensieve and stood over it, gazing into its depths. He hesitated, listening, then pulled out his wand again. The office and the corridor beyond were completely silent. He gave the contents of the Pensieve a small prod with the end of his wand.

The silvery stuff within began to swirl very fast. Harry leaned forwards over it and saw that it had become transparent. He was, once again, looking down into a room as though through a circular window in the ceiling… in fact, unless he was much mistaken, he was looking down into the Great Hall.

His breath was actually fogging the surface of Snape's thoughts… his brain seemed to be in limbo… it would be insane to do the thing he was so strongly tempted to do… he was trembling… Snape could be back at any moment… but Harry thought of Chos anger, of Malfoy's jeering face, and a reckless daring seized him.

He took a great gulp of breath, and plunged his face into the surface of Snape's thoughts. At once, the floor of the office lurched, tipping Harry head-first into the Pensieve…

He was falling through cold blackness, spinning furiously as he went, and then -

And here we are, the fatidic moment! Nice Potter goes out the door, almost. Then Evil Potter rears its ugly head: that Potter will be the one to betray Snape's trust in him. And again, if you don't have trust, what do you have left? No matter your reason for doing so, unless your 100% sure the person is hiding something that could change the stakes of a war, you should never do it!! I say 100%, not 99%.  As you'll see, Harry even forgets all about his 'noble' reasons for looking into the Pensieve once he spots his father. How bad is that?  

 

 

Yes, things he wants to remain secret. Why then did he do it?! Curiosity killed the cat!

I think we have a further clue about Occlumency: you can break someone's defences by accident. Therefore, I believe when Harry did during the last lesson, it was indeed because Snape let it slip by accident because he was too surprised.

Information about the Department of Mysteries!  Yeah right!  Even if it had been, was it a matter of life and death?  Not at all. There was no one at risk here, worst, it would have given a reason for Harry to not having practised enough or to not stop his dreams. If Harry had seen information related to him and the DofMysteries, I believe he would have added it to his list of reasons why he does not try hard enough to learn Occlumency and nothing more. Or he would have used it to play 'heroes' once again. But Harry doesn't want to see that, he prefers to delusion himself in thinking he's doing something right.  Teenagers!!

I wasn't surprised to see Snape come back so soon and supposedly not having brought Montague to the Infirmary himself due to what I mentioned earlier: when he learnt the news, Snape wasn't happy nor afraid. Therefore, Harry made an improbable guess!

 

 

Simply a description of the office and corridor. Sounds like they could normally hear if something was going on from the office, so Snape has an advantage over his guests somehow, because unless he's talking to someone, he should be able to tell if someone was coming along the corridor.

 Why not stop then if this was the Great Hall?! Harry's reason for spying in the Pensieve is so lame!!

 

I'm glad Harry is aware of his anger, but he doesn't seem aware of the foolish things he does thanks to that. This is very dangerous, especially in the saviour of the wizarding world, wouldn't you say?  I think so. It is insane yet he does it out of spite and anger towards life. Teenagers!


He was standing in the middle of the Great Hall [... ]

Harry looked around carefully. Snape had to be here somewhere… this was his memory…

And there he was, at a table right behind Harry. Harry stared.
Snape-the-teenager had a stringy, pallid look about him, like a plant kept in the dark. His hair was lank and greasy and was flopping on to the table, his hooked nose barely half an inch from the surface of the parchment as he scribbled. Harry moved around behind Snape and read the heading of the examination paper: DEFENCE AGAINST THE DARK ARTS - ORDINARY WIZARDING LEVEL.

So Snape had to be fifteen or sixteen, around Harry's own age. His hand was flying across the parchment; he had written at least a foot more than his closest neighbours, and yet his writing was minuscule and cramped.
 

I'm so glad we get to see Snape as a teenager!! ^_^ Here it is:

  • He has a stringy (lean) and pallid look, like a plant kept in the dark (that must be a huge clue!!)
  • Lank (hanging straight and limp without spring or curl) and greasy hair flopping (to swing or move loosely )on to the table.
  • Hooked nose
  • He was 15 or 16, around Harry's age (actually, about 6months older than Potter I reckon)
  • Snape writes very close to the parchment, hunched over it.
  • He writes very fast (his hand was flying over the parchment). His calligraphy was minuscule and cramped.
  • Snape wrote more than his closest neighbours, hence that must be Rowling's way to tell us that he was the type to write as much as possible on his exam.

My take on Snape's way of writing is that he is just like me: trying to cram as much as possible onto his answer sheet as he can, therefore he writes in a cramped way using minuscule letters. You should have seen my exam papers!!  I was always one of the only student to actually have to worry all the time about exceeding the required length.  I was so happy when computers came about: I could fit in more by playing with vertical and horizontal margins while also decreasing the space between each line! ^_^  Also, I would always write so fast when taking exams!  That's why, with some other details, I believe Snape to be a very through student in his exams and homework. No wonder he requires so much from his own students! I always sensed it from Book1 onward, but this is the best clue to prove my theory ever.  Therefore I say Snape is a swot!! Like me : D

[...] James yawned hugely and rumpled up his hair, making it even messier than it had been. Then, with a glance towards Professor Flitwick, he turned in his seat and grinned at a boy sitting four seats behind him.

With another shock of excitement, Harry saw Sirius give James the thumbs-up. Sirius was, lounging in his chair at his ease, tilting it back on two legs. He was very good-looking; his dark hair fell into his eyes with a sort of casual elegance neither James's nor Harry's could ever have achieved, and a girl sitting behind him was eyeing him hopefully, though he didn't seem to have noticed. And two seats along from this girl - Harry's stomach gave another pleasurable squirm - was Remus Lupin. He looked rather pale and peaky (was the full moon approaching?) and was absorbed in the exam: as he reread his answers, he scratched his chin with the end of his quill, frowning slightly.

 

 

 

 

 

So that meant Wormtail had to be around here somewhere, too… and sure enough, Harry spotted him within seconds: a small, mousy-haired boy with a pointed nose. Wormtail looked anxious; he was chewing his fingernails, staring down at his paper, scuffing the ground with his toes. Every now and then he glanced hopefully at his neighbours paper.  [...]

 Why do I care? Because it's essential to get the right image of the Marauders and the students surrounding Severus or else, we won't understand why they did what they did, and why Snape would not like them at all. To understand from Severus' point of view, I'll try using only my normally Snappish judgmental mind for you. Just like I do when writing Snape's Journal. I warn you, I'm very picky when it comes to school and I do believe it fits well with how Snape must have been.  Don't complain though!  Here, I'm annoyed by James yawning like that as if he didn't have any manners. You can yawn, but doing so like he did (hugely) isn't what I consider appropriate. I would hate seeing him do that and seeing him with rumpled hair to look cool and laid back. Yuck!

At least they didn't talk!  I would smile but not do the "thumbs-up" by respect to those who may have found the exam hard. I never did and always found this laid backing after an exam, tilting on two legs very annoying and lacking seriousness. I actually always made sure to sit in front so I could avoid students doing that in front of me!

Good looking guy, casually making sure people see him!  Yuck!! How I loath such people! The super cute and cool guys who think they're so intelligent because they always score high on their exams.  x_x  I was competing against such people when I was at school. I don't have the memory capability as those type of students do, but I can tell you: you're not missing a lot in terms of brightness and common sense!  And where is the virtue and pride of doing everything with easiness!?  No wonder Snape hated them, he surely hated them for showing off how good they were all the time and how easy it was for them. And if Snape is like me, he surely thinks there is indeed nothing to be proud of when one doesn't even need to produce some efforts to achieve something.  Results without effort is what I call the perfect recipe for arrogance, contemptuousness, and fullness of oneself.   With those reunited in one person, you get real gits who never lift more than one finger and still get 100%, which gives them enough time to pretend their the kings and the coolest, and for mischief.  And who is their favourite preys?!  Guess it's easy!  Swots! I was a swot myself and believe me, even though nothing as bad as Severus happened to me, I still have nightmares about it. AND DON'T EVER GIVE ME THAT STUPID EXPLANATION "WE WERE YOUNG AND FOOLISH". I was young, yet I wasn't foolish! Therefore there are no excuses.

From now on, please notice how easy it is to guess how Wormtail will end up. It's so obvious!! And anyone who hangs around James and Sirius ought to have been ones to enjoy seeing others torture, don't you think?  From my experience of such bullies (in my case, it was not physical, mainly psychological but I had my family support me and love me, unlike Severus surely), believe me, someone like Wormtail is bound to become a bad guy or at least someone who will gorge himself of other people's misery.  Already at school, I knew such people, it didn't take a doctorate in psychology to guess so. I've seen a couple of those again, and bull's eye! They're just as wormy as wormtail.

However, do not believe I do not sympathise with Wormtail. I also underlined how he was treated by his 'friends'.  Doesn't take you long to figure out why he turned so bad!  Frankly, It's even hard for me to sympathise with James and Sirius for entrusting Wormtail with their secret!  Duh!!  The way they made fun of him is horrible and I would never stand for that myself! If people whom I thought I was friends with did something like berating me or calling me stupid using veiled words, I would be out of there!!  Yes, I was alone, but I knew it was a conscious choice and I dealt with the consequences so.

Harry looked around and glimpsed Snape a short way away, moving between the tables towards the doors to the Entrance Hall, still absorbed in his own exam paper. Round-shouldered yet angular, he walked in a twitchy manner that recalled a spider, and his oily hair was jumping about his face.

A gang of chattering girls separated Snape from James, Sirius and Lupin, and by planting himself in their midst, Harry managed to keep Snape in sight while straining his ears to catch the voices of James and his friends.

[...]  

 


 

(Wormtail talking) 'I got the snout shape, the pupils of the eyes and the tufted tail,' he said anxiously, 'but I couldn't think what else -'

'How thick are you, Wormtail?' said James impatiently. 'You run round with a werewolf once a month -'

'Keep your voice down,' implored Lupin.

Harry looked anxiously behind him again. Snape remained close by, still buried in his exam questions - but this was Snape's memory and Harry was sure that if Snape chose to wander off in a different direction once outside in the grounds, he, Harry, would not be able to follow James any further. To his intense relief, however, when James and his three friends strode off down the lawn towards the lake, Snape followed, still poring over the exam paper and apparently with no fixed idea of where he was going. By keeping a little ahead of him, Harry managed to maintain a close watch on James and the others.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

'Well, I thought that paper was a piece of cake,' he heard Sirius say. Til be surprised if I don't get "Outstanding" on it at least.'

'Me too,' said James. He put his hand in his pocket and took out a struggling Golden Snitch.

 Reminds you of someone?!  Hermione of course!! And me in fact! He he! Yes, once an exam was over, I would worry if I had answered well or not, then I would check back on my notes if I had forgotten something so I wouldn't forget at another time, etc.  IN fact, I've only seen swots like me do it or at times the super-nerds like Potter and James when they discussed a question and didn't agree. That's one of the reasons why I believe Snape was and still is a swot. He'll put in much effort into his studies, he will give his 100% no matter what, and it also explains why he will require it from his students. Seeing that scene made me remember so many thing. When I got out of an exam room, it was like mentally re-doing my exam all over again. I also stressed out at times, but that was generally because I wasn't confident enough with myself. Like I said, and Snape does seem like that, too, I do not have a memory equivalent to people like James. I have to study, though not as much as most people, and I do have to remember facts by heart. However, the big difference is in my analysing skills and the fact that I never studied for an exam only. When I studied, I intended to remember for a long time thereafter. Ah! Such souvenirs!! I won't note down all the times we'll see Snape perusing over his exam, because it comes back often and I've marked them in red.

  • Snape has round-shoulders yet angular
  • He walked in a twitchy manner that recalled a spider
  • His oily hair was jumping about his face.

 

This is what I meant earlier by Wormtail's being neglected and insulted.  I would never say something like that to my "friend".  I'd say, at the worst, a funny sarcastic comment which I knew would be taken for a joke by my friend such as "Maybe you studied too much and your brain went for a walk during the exam" or I would sympathise, trying to understand how come he couldn't think of something else like: "Oh my! Were you nervous or what?!" But I would never have insulted my friend in that way, not now and not as a teenager. And if some people were to tell me such things and still pretend to be my friends, then I'd take a long walk away from them and make it clear I didn't want to be with them anymore if that's their concept of friendship.

This is why I mentioned earlier that Harry's reasons for invading Snape's Pensieve did not hold the road. Harry's deluding himself if he thinks he was there only to find out if there was something about the Depart. of Mysteries: he doesn't care for Snape at all and only wishes for him to remain there.  How strong was his desire to know about Snape?! Feeble and unsubstantial since the minute he can get away from him he runs off to his father! That's why I say he had no valid reason to be in the Pensieve even though he succeeds in convincing himself doing so would have revealed some secrets he was dying to know, those related to Voldemort, those he wanted to use to elaborate some theory related to his dreams (you know, the dreams he shouldn't be having!). But in this case, it has nothing to do with the Dark Lord at all!! And that's why Harry's actions are worst than just abusing Snape's trust! He's defending himself by saying he may discover some important clues towards his dreams and Voldemort. Yeah right! If he were, then he would have left that memory and sought another!!!

This is so cute! I would have loved to have him as a study partner!  Actually, I never had a study partner. Except my first crush which lasted from Grade 3 to secondary 5!! He was the only person with whom it was challenging to work, he wasn't a bullet!  He's a swot with a very good memory, so it was easy for him, but he still was a great guy. Bouhou! And even then  I still think of him now .  Sniff! But back to business: this shows how concentrated he is and how much he pours effort into his studies. He won't let the end of an exam be the end of learning. He will take it further, analyse it and understand it so the next time he gets one, he will know what to expect. How often I did that!! The goal is to be able to analyse an exam without the stress of answering questions and having all of your time, that's why I would do it when I finished answering.   If I had extra time left, first of all I would review all of my answers. I mean ALL, not the most complicated ones. Then, I would re-read the questions and try to decipher a pattern in the questions being asked because I wanted to memorize the type of questions they asked, the way they formulated them, and what they focused on.  Ministry exams or my teachers' exams, they were worth studying so that next time I knew what was coming my way ! It always worked like a charm though I doubt lots of people do that?! Anyway, that's exactly what I believe Snape is doing or else he wouldn't have brought the exam paper and inspect it for so long just for the sheer pleasure of looking at it!

 Argh!! The epitome of confidence!! I've known enough people who were bold enough to talk in that way when barely out of an exam, and I always thought it was very inconsiderate. I myself always made sure I said so if asked the question, and then I'd make sure a friend who was not as good as I was not around or else, I wouldn't say "the exam was so easy I was bored out of my skull" like Sirius!! What if someone around had a hard time?!  Yes, ladies, such people do exist, I've met too many of them believe me! Those who have it easy at school because of their academic brains... doesn't mean anything to me because I know the difference between brains and memory (like James and Sirius) and real intelligence (analysis and common sense).  That's why we have Mensa level politic leaders who can't seem to be able to be decent and show one ounce of common sense! Therefore, yes, I do believe I.Q. tests are overrated! Not that I don't meet up with them, but I also know that the more you do, the more you 'get intelligent' and I know of enough morons who have competed against me at school to tell you that having a high I.Q. certainly does not account for being a prat like James and Sirius!! To me it's the opposite: it shows how conceited and dumb they truly are!

 'Where'd you get that?'

'Nicked it,' said James casually. He started playing with the Snitch, allowing it to fly as much as a foot away before seizing it again; his reflexes were excellent. Wormtail watched him in awe.

They stopped in the shade of the very same beech tree on the edge of the lake where Harry, Ron and Hermione had once spent a Sunday finishing their homework, and threw themselves down on the grass. Harry looked over his shoulder yet again and saw, to his delight, that Snape had settled himself on the grass in the dense shadow of a clump of bushes. He was as deeply immersed in the OWL paper as ever, which left Harry free to sit down on the grass between the beech and the bushes and watch the foursome under the tree. The sunlight was dazzling on the smooth surface of the lake, on the bank of which the group of laughing girls who had just left the Great Hall were sitting, with their shoes and socks off, cooling their feet in the water.

Lupin had pulled out a book and was reading. Sirius stared around at the students milling over the grass, looking rather haughty and bored, but very handsomely so. James was still playing with the Snitch, letting it zoom further and further away, almost escaping but always grabbed at the last second. Wormtail was watching him with his mouth open. Every time James made a particularly difficult catch, Wormtail gasped and applauded. After five minutes of this, Harry wondered why James didn't tell Wormtail to get a grip on himself, but James seemed to be enjoying the attention. Harry noticed that his father had a habit of rumpling up his hair as though to keep it from getting too tidy, and he also kept looking over at the girls by the water's edge.

Tut that away, will you,' said Sirius finally, as James made a fine catch and Wormtail let out a cheer, 'before Wormtail wets himself with excitement.'

Wormtail turned slightly pink, but James grinned.

'If it bothers you,' he said, stuffing the Snitch back in his pocket. Harry had the distinct impression that Sirius was the only one for whom James would have stopped showing off.

'I'm bored,' said Sirius. 'Wish it was full moon.'

'You might,' said Lupin darkly from behind his book. 'We've still got Transfiguration, if you're bored you could test me. Here…" and he held out his book.

But Sirius snorted. 'I don't need to look at that rubbish, I know it all.'

This'll liven you up, Padfoot,' said James quietly. 'Look who it is…'

 

And that does not sound weird to anybody?! No wonder Snape loathed the guy: he was permitted what he wanted because he was so cool! Yuck!!!! Don't tell me he outgrew his natural self that much, sorry, but I won't believe it!! If his head was so inflated, then it surely was still when he was older. There's a French saying that goes like this: "Chase one's true nature, and it comes back your way at full speed."  I'm not saying he wasn't a good father or husband, but his attitude towards others couldn't have changed that much over the years. It's as if Snape suddenly began to trust most people around him and chat around!  Such strongly ingrained behaviours simply don't go away like that. You can hide them, but at one point they will surface again don't you assume otherwise. Any psychology book will tell you so.  

 

Sirius's head turned. He became very still, like a dog that has scented a rabbit.

'Excellent,' he said softly. 'Snivellus.'

Harry turned to see what Sirius was looking at.

Snape was on his feet again, and was stowing the OWL paper in his bag. As he left the shadows of the bushes and set off across the grass, Sirius and James stood up.

Lupin and Wormtail remained sitting: Lupin was still staring down at his book, though his eyes were not moving and a faint frown line had appeared between his eyebrows; Wormtail was looking from Sirius and James to Snape with a look of avid anticipation on his face.

'All right, Snivellus?' said James loudly.

Snape reacted so fast it was as though he had been expecting an attack: dropping his bag, he plunged his hand inside his robes and his wand was halfway into the air when James shouted, 'Expelliarmus!'

Snape's wand flew twelve feet into the air and fell with a little thud in the grass behind him. Sirius let out a bark of laughter.

'Impedimenta!' he said, pointing his wand at Snape, who was knocked off his feet halfway through a dive towards his own fallen wand.

Students all around had turned to watch. Some of them had got to their feet and were edging nearer. Some looked apprehensive, others entertained.

Snape lay panting on the ground. James and Sirius advanced on him, wands raised, James glancing over his shoulder at the girls at the water's edge as he went. Wormtail was on his feet now, watching hungrily, edging around Lupin to get a clearer view.

'How'd the exam go, Snivelly?' said James.

'I was watching him, his nose was touching the parchment,' said Sirius viciously. There'll be great grease marks all over it, they won't be able to read a word.'

Several people watching laughed; Snape was clearly unpopular. Wormtail sniggered shrilly. Snape was trying to get up, but the jinx was still operating on him; he was struggling, as though bound by invisible ropes.

'You - wait,' he panted, staring up at James with an expression of purest loathing, 'you - wait!'

'Wait for what?' said Sirius coolly. 'What're you going to do, Snivelly, wipe your nose on us?'

Snape let out a stream of mixed swear words and hexes, but with his wand ten feet away nothing happened.

'Wash out your mouth,' said James coldly. 'Scourgify!'

Pink soap bubbles streamed from Snape's mouth at once; the froth was covering his lips, making him gag, choking him -

 

 

'Leave him ALONE!'

James and Sirius looked round. James's free hand immediately jumped to his hair.

It was one of the girls from the lake edge. She had thick, dark red hair that fell to her shoulders, and startlingly green almond-shaped eyes - Harry's eyes.

Harry's mother.

'All right, Evans?' said James, and the tone of his voice was suddenly pleasant, deeper, more mature.

'Leave him alone,' Lily repeated. She was looking at James with every sign of great dislike. 'What's he done to you?'

'Well,' said James, appearing to deliberate the point, 'it's more the fact that he exists, if you know what I mean…'

Many of the surrounding students laughed, Sirius and Wormtail included, but Lupin, still apparently intent on his book, didn't, and nor did Lily.

'You think you're funny,' she said coldly. 'But you're just an arrogant, bullying toerag, Potter. Leave him alone.'

'I will if you go out with me, Evans,' said James quickly. 'Go on… go out with me and I'll never lay a wand on old Snivelly again.'

Behind him, the Impediment Jinx was wearing off. Snape was beginning to inch towards his fallen wand, spitting out soapsuds as he crawled.

'I wouldn't go out with you if it was a choice between you and the giant squid,' said Lily.

'Bad luck, Prongs,' said Sirius briskly, and turned back to Snape. 'OI!'

But too late; Snape had directed his wand straight at James; there was a flash of light and a gash appeared on the side of James's face, spattering his robes with blood. James whirled about: a second flash of light later, Snape was hanging upside-down in the air, his robes falling over his head to reveal skinny, pallid legs and a pair of greying underpants.

Many people in the small crowd cheered; Sirius, James and Wormtail roared with laughter.

Lily, whose furious expression had twitched for an instant as though she was going to smile, said, 'Let him down!'

'Certainly,' said James and he jerked his wand upwards; Snape fell into a crumpled heap on the ground. Disentangling himself from his robes he got quickly to his feet, wand up, but Sirius said, 'Petrificus Totalus!' and Snape keeled over again, rigid as a board.

 

 

'LEAVE HIM ALONE!' Lily shouted. She had her own wand out now. James and Sirius eyed it warily.

'Ah, Evans, don't make me hex you,' said James earnestly.

Take the curse off him, then!'

James sighed deeply, then turned to Snape and muttered the counter-curse.

There you go,' he said, as Snape struggled to his feet. 'You're lucky Evans was here, Snivellus —'

'I don't need help from filthy little Mudbloods like her!'

Lily blinked.

'Fine,' she said coolly. 'I won't bother in future. And I'd wash your pants if I were you, Snivellus.'

'Apologise to Evans!' James roared at Snape, his wand pointed threateningly at him.

'I don't want you to make him apologise,' Lily shouted, rounding on James. 'You're as bad as he is.'

'What?' yelped James. I'd NEVER call you a - you-know-what!'

'Messing up your hair because you think it looks cool to look like you've just got off your broomstick, showing off with that stupid Snitch, walking down corridors and hexing anyone who annoys you just because you can - I'm surprised your broomstick can get off the ground with that fat head on it. You make me SICK.'

She turned on her heel and hurried away.

'Evans!' James shouted after her. 'Hey, EVANS!'

But she didn't look back.

'What is it with her?' said James, trying and failing to look as though this was a throwaway question of no real importance to him.

'Reading between the lines, I'd say she thinks you're a bit conceited, mate,' said Sirius.

'Right,' said James, who looked furious now, 'right -'

There was another flash of light, and Snape was once again hanging upside-down in the air.

'Who wants to see me take off Snivelly's pants?'

 

 

But whether James really did take off Snapes pants, Harry never found out. A hand had closed tight over his upper arm, closed with a pincer-like grip. Wincing, Harry looked round to see who had hold of him, and saw, with a thrill of horror, a fully grown, adult-sized Snape standing right beside him, white with rage.

'Having fun?'

Harry felt himself rising into the air; the summer's day evaporated around him; he was floating upwards through icy blackness, Snape's hand still tight upon his upper arm. Then, with a swooping feeling as though he had turned head-over-heels in midair, his feet hit the stone floor of Snape's dungeon and he was standing again beside the Pensieve on Snape's desk in the shadowy, present-day Potion masters study.

'So,' said Snape, gripping Harry's arm so tightly Harry's hand was starting to feel numb. 'So… been enjoying yourself, Potter?'

'N-no,' said Harry, trying to free his arm.

It was scary: Snape's lips were shaking, his face was white, his teeth were bared.

'Amusing man, your father, wasn't he?' said Snape, shaking Harry so hard his glasses slipped down his nose.

'I - didn't -'

Snape threw Harry from him with all his might. Harry fell hard on to the dungeon floor.

'You will not repeat what you saw to anybody!' Snape bellowed.

'No,' said Harry, getting to his feet as far from Snape as he could. 'No, of course I w—'

'Get out, get out, I don't want to see you in this office ever again!'

 

And as Harry hurtled towards the door, a jar of dead cockroaches exploded over his head. He wrenched the door open and flew along the corridor, stopping only when he had put three floors between himself and Snape. There he leaned against the wall, panting, and rubbing his bruised arm.

He had no desire at all to return to Gryffindor Tower so early, nor to tell Ron and Hermione what he had just seen. What was making Harry feel so horrified and unhappy was not being shouted at or having jars thrown at him; it was that he knew how it felt to be humiliated in the middle of a circle of onlookers, knew exactly how Snape had felt as his father had taunted him, and that judging from what he had just seen, his father had been every bit as arrogant as Snape had always told him.

 

Chapter 29

'I would also advise Transfiguration, because Aurors frequently need to Transfigure or Untransfigure in their work. And I ought to tell you now, Potter, that I do not accept students into my NEWT classes unless they have achieved "Exceeds Expectations" or higher at Ordinary Wizarding Level. I'd say you're averaging "Acceptable" at the moment, so you'll need to put in some good hard work before the exams to stand a chance of continuing. Then you ought to do Charms, always useful, and Potions. Yes, Potter, Potions,' she added, with the merest flicker of a smile. 'Poisons and antidotes are essential study for Aurors. And I must tell you that Professor Snape absolutely refuses to take students who get anything other than "Outstanding" in their OWLs, so -'

Professor Umbridge gave her most pronounced cough yet.

'May I offer you a cough drop, Dolores?' Professor McGonagall asked curtly, without looking at Professor Umbridge.

[...]

Professor McGonagall got to her feet, too, and in her case this was a much more impressive move; she towered over Professor Umbridge.

'Potter,' she said in ringing tones, 'I will assist you to become an Auror if it is the last thing I do! If I have to coach you nightly, I will make sure you achieve the required results!' [Lady Claudia: I really wonder how she'll pull it off!! ]

 

'But why haven't you got Occlumency lessons any more?' said Hermione, frowning.

'I've told you,' Harry muttered. 'Snape reckons I can carry on by myself now I've got the basics.'

'So you've stopped having funny dreams?' said Hermione sceptically.

'Pretty much,' said Harry, not looking at her.

'Well, I don't think Snape should stop until you're absolutely sure you can control them!' said Hermione indignantly. 'Harry, I think you should go back to him and ask -'

'No,' said Harry forcefully. 'Just drop it, Hermione, OK?'

 Yes, go Hermione!  You clever little thing! Well, it won't do much good if Harry doesn't tell the truth though. A pity! But she's doing her job and that's why she's my favourite!  

 

 

 

 

 

And indeed, she should feel indignant, but not towards Snape.

It was not only the prospect of breaking into Umbridge's office and using her fire to speak to Sirius that was making him feel nervous, though that was certainly bad enough; today also happened to be the first time Harry would be in close proximity to Snape since Snape had thrown him out of his office.

After lying in bed for a while thinking about the day ahead, Harry got up very quietly and moved across to the window beside Nevilles bed, and stared out on a truly glorious morning. The sky was a clear, misty, opalescent blue. Directly ahead of him, Harry could see the towering beech tree below which his father had once tormented Snape. He was not sure what Sirius could possibly say to him that would make up for what he had seen in the Pensieve, but he was desperate to hear Sirius's own account of what had happened, to know of any mitigating factors there might have been, any excuse at all for his father's behaviour…

 

 

Oh now you're afraid!! That's our Potter: when he recognises his faults, then he will feel shame and fear. I think that's healthy for him to feel like that, to feel guilty.  However, I do not approve of his risking their necks and Sirius' because he 'can't wait' to know the truth. Is that a matter of life or death? Nope!  But again, Potter can't wait and he recklessly follows the path of rule breaking because he judges the situation to require such drastic measures. However, remember that this is exactly the kind of judgement Snape has always warned others about towards Harry: "Don't let him have his ways or he'll always think he can do reckless things without so much consequences. And one day, you'll see, he's going to put all of our necks on the line!"  That is Snape's main message where Harry is concerned, right.  And there's the proof again. I'm glad in that book both Ron and Hermione mentioned that to Harry, about his 'heroic unconscious recklessness'.  A shame he didn't take the hint!

Mitigating: to soothe or mollify especially by concessions, pacify. I'm also looking forward to anything that might discriminate the Marauders, however, Sirius wasn't very convincing and after analysing the whole scene, it's hard to believe James and Sirius weren't  bad boys.

By the time they reached the dungeons, neither Harry nor Ron was speaking to Hermione. Undeterred, she took advantage of their silence to maintain an uninterrupted flow of dire warnings, all uttered under her breath in a vehement hiss that caused Seamus to waste five whole minutes checking his cauldron for leaks.

Snape, meanwhile, seemed to have decided to act as though Harry were invisible. Harry was, of course, well-used to this tactic, as it was one of Uncle Vernon's favourites, and on the whole was grateful he had to suffer nothing worse. In fact, compared to what he usually had to endure from Snape in the way of taunts and snide remarks, he found the new approach something of an improvement, and was pleased to find that when left well alone, he was able to concoct an Invigoration Draught quite easily. At the end of the lesson he scooped some of the potion into a flask, corked it and took it up to Snape's desk for marking, feeling that he might at last have scraped an '£'.

He had just turned away when he heard a smashing noise. Malfoy gave a gleeful yell of laughter. Harry whipped around. His potion sample lay in pieces on the floor and Snape was surveying him with a look of gloating pleasure.

'Whoops,' he said softly. 'Another zero, then, Potter.'

Harry was too incensed to speak. He strode back to his cauldron, intending to fill another flask and force Snape to mark it, but saw to his horror that the rest of the contents had vanished.

'I'm sorry!' said Hermione, with her hands over her mouth. 'I'm really sorry, Harry. I thought you'd finished, so I cleared up!'

 

 

 

 

 

Harry could not bring himself to answer. When the bell rang, he hurried out of the dungeon without a backwards glance, and made sure that he found himself a seat between Neville and Seamus for lunch so that Hermione could not start nagging him again about using Umbridge's office.

 Small note: no wonder so many people like to compare Hermione's ways with Snape! Hissing warnings!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Never trust a dormant snake! Snape is the proof that still water run deep! And it once again proves that Snape will get back at you or get his revenge when you least expect it. Especially when you think all is well after all. No, Slytherins love their revenge to be served cold! He won't do it when his opponent is expecting it! That's way too Gryffindor anyhow.

Notice how Snape also made sure to do that after Hermione had 'Evanescoed' his cauldron. The sly thing.  What surprised me is how come Harry is still so gullible. Surely he had some kind of idea in the back of his mind that Snape would again take his revenge in such a backhanded way?! If not, then he truly is a gullible little Gryffindor. It happened before, why not now?! When I read the "Whoops" the first time I read the book, the sign "Snape's revenge in action" popped into mind immediately. And then it was followed by my thinking from Harry's point of view: "Oh boy! I had it coming didn't I?!"  But no, that's not what he thought at all and I was so surprised or rather disappointment that he didn't take this as a small price to pay for his own breach of trust.  To me, this was also the perfect revenge because of the correlation between both incidents: Harry acted as though he didn't mean it and it was almost an 'accident', he didn't apologize even! Snape did the same thing, he acted as though he 'didn't mean it', innocently.  Therefore, unlike Snape's other revenges throughout the series, this one was equal in meaning and intent. Not in gravity of course, but he got his message across. A shame Potter didn't seem to notice that!

There may be a mistake, but wouldn't 'Reparo' help a tiny bit here?! The potion may not be as good as the original sample, but still gradable.  

See how Harry is conscious of his foolish pranks? He purposely avoids Hermione so he won't be nagged about it! He knows what's right and what's not, thus I'm pretty sure that's exactly this that ticks poor Snape so much about the boy: he knows he's being reckless or that he acts without proper planning or sharing his information with adults first. That's why he warns others about Harry all the time, he doesn't think Harry is simply innocent, he believes Harry has his share of responsibility in the adventures he ends up with and that's what he wants the boy to be punished for. As for the incident with the muggle car in Book2 for example: he doesn't believe Harry is not to be accounted for in a severe way because he didn't think. For him, that's more than enough to provide ample punishment. However, from Dumbledore and McGonagall's point of view, they check off Harry's actions as being foolish because he didn't think which is why they are so forgiving.  In my humble opinion, I think they all reacted extremely: Snape too much, the others not enough. I would have settled for a month of detentions to impress the gravity of the situation.  Especially since one of my teachers would express his wish to expel a student for such a stupid stunt. But I wasn't there, was I! Ha ha!

What Snape doesn't seem to understand however is how Harry does not intend on proving he's the best  like James used to be. Yes, he's reckless like his father, but not for the attention and glory it will bring upon him. If only Snape could see that, then he may act with the boy differently.  Too bad!

'No,' said Harry, 'it's nothing like that… I just wanted to talk… about my dad.'

They exchanged a look of great surprise, but Harry did not have time to feel awkward or embarrassed; his knees were becoming sorer by the second and he guessed five minutes had already passed from the start of the diversion; George had only guaranteed him twenty. He therefore plunged immediately into the story of what he had seen in the Pensieve.

When he had finished, neither Sirius nor Lupin spoke for a moment. Then Lupin said quietly, 'I wouldn't like you to judge your father on what you saw there, Harry. He was only fifteen -'

'I'm fifteen!' said Harry heatedly.

'Look, Harry' said Sirius placatingly, 'James and Snape hated each other from the moment they set eyes on each other, it was just one of those things, you can understand that, can't you? I think James was everything Snape wanted to be - he was popular, he was good at Quidditch - good at pretty much everything. And Snape was just this little oddball who was up to his eyes in the Dark Arts, and James - whatever else he may have appeared to you, Harry - always hated the Dark Arts.'

'Yeah,' said Harry, 'but he just attacked Snape for no good reason, just because - well, just because you said you were bored,' he finished, with a slightly apologetic note in his voice.

'I'm not proud of it,' said Sirius quickly.

Lupin looked sideways at Sirius, then said, 'Look, Harry, what you've got to understand is that your father and Sirius were the best in the school at whatever they did - everyone thought they were the height of cool - if they sometimes got a bit carried away -'

'If we were sometimes arrogant little berks, you mean,' said Sirius.

Lupin smiled.

'He kept messing up his hair,' said Harry in a pained voice.

Sirius and Lupin laughed.

'I'd forgotten he used to do that,' said Sirius affectionately.

'Was he playing with the Snitch?' said Lupin eagerly.

'Yeah,' said Harry, watching uncomprehendingly as Sirius and Lupin beamed reminiscently. 'Well… I thought he was a bit of an idiot.'

'Of course he was a bit of an idiot!' said Sirius bracingly, 'we were all idiots! Well - not Moony so much,' he said fairly, looking at Lupin.

But Lupin shook his head. 'Did I ever tell you to lay off Snape?' he said. 'Did I ever have the guts to tell you I thought you were out of order?'

'Yeah, well,' said Sirius, 'you made us feel ashamed of ourselves sometimes… that was something…"

'And,' said Harry doggedly, determined to say everything that was on his mind now he was here, 'he kept looking over at the girls by the lake, hoping they were watching him!'

'Oh, well, he always made a fool of himself whenever Lily was around,' said Sirius, shrugging, 'he couldn't stop himself showing off whenever he got near her.'

'How come she married him?' Harry asked miserably. 'She hated him!'

'Nah, she didn't,' said Sirius.

'She started going out with him in seventh year,' said Lupin.

'Once James had deflated his head a bit,' said Sirius.

'And stopped hexing people just for the fun of it,' said Lupin.

'Even Snape?' said Harry.

Well,' said Lupin slowly, 'Snape was a special case. I mean, he never lost an opportunity to curse James so you couldn't really expect James to take that lying down, could you?'

'And my mum was OK with that?'

'She didn't know too much about it, to tell you the truth,' said Sirius. '1 mean, James didn't take Snape on dates with her and jinx him in front of her, did he?'

Sirius frowned at Harry, who was still looking unconvinced.

'Look,' he said, 'your father was the best friend I ever had and he was a good person. A lot of people are idiots at the age of fifteen. He grew out of it.'

'Yeah, OK,' said Harry heavily. 'I just never thought I'd feel sorry for Snape.'

'Now you mention it,' said Lupin, a faint crease between his eyebrows, 'how did Snape react when he found you'd seen all this?'

'He told me he'd never teach me Occlumency again,' said Harry indifferently, 'like that's a big disappoint—'

'He WHAT?' shouted Sirius, causing Harry to jump and inhale a mouthful of ashes.

'Are you serious, Harry?' said Lupin quickly. 'He's stopped giving you lessons?'

'Yeah,' said Harry, surprised at what he considered a great over-reaction. 'But it's OK, I don't care, it's a bit of a relief to tell you the -'

'I'm coming up there to have a word with Snape!' said Sirius forcefully, and he actually made to stand up, but Lupin wrenched him back down again.

'If anyone's going to tell Snape it will be me!' he said firmly. 'But Harry, first of all, you're to go back to Snape and tell him that on no account is he to stop giving you lessons — when Dumbledore hears -'

'I can't tell him that, he'd kill me!' said Harry, outraged. 'You didn't see him when we got out of the Pensieve.'

'Harry there is nothing so important as you learning Occlumency!' said Lupin sternly. 'Do you understand me? Nothing!'

'OK, OK,' said Harry, thoroughly discomposed, not to mention annoyed. Til… I'll try and say something to him… but it won't be-'